CARLSBAD, Calif., (Sept. 5, 2006) – With a solid 3-2 two moto finish for 2nd overall this past weekend at the Monster Energy/Kawasaki Steel City National, Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Ryan Villopoto put a 29-point gap (433-404) between he and rival Mike Alessi for the overall AMA Lites class championship with one race remaining on the season.
“It all boils down to Glen Helen this weekend,” said Villopoto. “Fortunately, I’ve got enough of a lead that if something disastrous happens in one moto, I can overcome it with a good performance in the other moto. It’s not over yet, though, and I’m sure everybody on the Monster Energy/Pro Cirucit/Kawasaki team will be on top of things so I have the best bike possible when the gate drops on Glen Helen.”
Mathematically speaking Villopoto has to come out of Glen Helen with 21 combined (both motos) points in order to win the title – if in fact Alessi can go 1-1. Given that scenario (Villopoto with 21 points, Alessi going 1-1), the two would then have 454 points and Villopoto would win the tie breaker due to the fact he’s won more overall races this summer.
At Steel City Villopoto led a Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki assault that featured all three of its racers placing in the top ten overall. Along with Villopoto (2nd), Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki’s Troy Adams (8th) and Chris Gosselaar (9th) each finished in the top ten.
In the first moto Villopoto had to charge from behind after a not-so-great start put him in 8th place after the first lap. The Washington native buckled down and began picking off the class’ best racers – including Alessi on lap five – in his march toward the podium. In the second moto Villopoto pulled out of the gate better and parlayed his 2nd place start the entire distance, taking 2nd in the moto and 2nd overall on the day.
Next up for the Monster Energy/Pro Circuit/Kawasaki team is the final round of the Outdoor Nationals, this weekend at Glen Helen Raceway (San Bernardino, Calf.).